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Rebecca

Promotional tools for writers

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NOTE: For context, this was split from Zee's original topic: Who’s on Goodreads?

 

 

15 hours ago, Chris Brown said:

I look at their promotion opportunities now and can't see anything I would want to do. 

 

Just out of curiosity, what kind of promotion opportunities would you find most helpful? The question is open to all.

 

I'm working on a new site that's a storytelling platform (a sister site to CW) so I'm very interested to hear responses to this. I'd like to include features everyone would find helpful and this gives me ideas. 🙂

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Well, things that would get our material out in front of readers.  For example, Christian books in front of Christian audiences.  By the way, I think you're on to something, Rebecca.

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2 minutes ago, suspensewriter said:

Well, things that would get our material out in front of readers.  For example, Christian books in front of Christian audiences.

This would be my answer as well. Not necessarily a point of sale, but a place of discussion. Not even a place to post the whole book, but perhaps a few paragraphs or the first chapter.

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I recently made a social media exodus (in early March). I was grateful for the weight lifted off my shoulders - reduced the comparison game in my head, and really gave me back time I had no idea I was wasting. I was so addicted. The new time I had led to a very successful Camp NaNo. I am now looking at this upcoming release date and scratching my head about how to spread the word. I've done a lot of social media marketing - my husband and I were self employed for 6 years. But I know I'll go right down the rabbit hole if I sign back up. I do have Pinterest but I've never spent much time on there. I make pins for my blog posts and I made a couple for my book.

I've been wondering if GR is helpful to authors. I have a friend who is 7x published, secular author. She loathes GR. Says all the time it's just a den of wolves.

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Yes, I know there are loads of people out there who’d love to read high quality Christian/Biblical worldview fiction, but honestly, it’s so buried under piles of junk, both from a moral and artistic perspective, that it’s practically impossible to find it unless you’re looking for a specific title/author name...and you can’t do that if you don’t know it.

 

So something that provides publicity, readers, and reviews, for Christian fiction would be awesome. 

 

I actually contacted several specifically Christian reviewers/book bloggers about reading and reviewing my latest book, but never heard back from any of them. They’re certainly in the minority, so probably swamped with review requests.

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3 hours ago, Zee said:

They’re certainly in the minority, so probably swamped with review requests.

I have been scouring the web for bloggers that review Christian Fiction, too. They are few and far between, and then I keep finding ones that haven't posted since 2014, 2015.

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29 minutes ago, Regina Walker said:

I have been scouring the web for bloggers that review Christian Fiction, too. They are few and far between, and then I keep finding ones that haven't posted since 2014, 2015.

 

I contacted about 40 Christian book bloggers, had maybe 5 respond at all, and 2  actually reviewed my book. The 2 that accepted were of course pretty small, although I certainly appreciated anything I could get. I found that most of them were predominantly fiction if not exclusively fiction. Anyway, I tried to attach my spreadsheet for that and CW wouldn't let me, so attached is a screenshot of my spreadsheet. 🙂 Maybe there is somebody on there you didn't find that would be interested in your books. And certainly there are others out there that I missed or that have come along since I made this effort over a year ago.

Book Blogs for CW.JPG

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1 minute ago, Chris Brown said:

Maybe there is somebody on there you didn't find that would be interested in your books.

Thank you so much Chris. That is incredibly generous of you.

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6 hours ago, Rebecca said:

NOTE: For context, this was split from Zee's original topic: Who’s on Goodreads?

 

 

 

Just out of curiosity, what kind of promotion opportunities would you find most helpful? The question is open to all.

 

I'm working on a new site that's a storytelling platform (a sister site to CW) so I'm very interested to hear responses to this. I'd like to include features everyone would find helpful and this gives me ideas. 🙂

Great question, and I think others essentially answered the same way I did. If I could target advertising to readers based on demographics or what else they read, that would be fantastic. Show my material to others who read Christian memoirs/biographies - that's what I'd like.

Unless it's changed recently, Goodreads wants me to pay them $75 or $100 for the privilege of sending dozens of free books to scammers or resellers. No, thanks. 

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@Chris Brown would you mind PMing me the file for that? I'd love to do a follow up on them and see how much it's changed. 

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14 hours ago, Rebecca said:

Just out of curiosity, what kind of promotion opportunities would you find most helpful? The question is open to all.

 

I'm working on a new site that's a storytelling platform (a sister site to CW) so I'm very interested to hear responses to this.

 

Thanks, @Alley for the heads-up about this thread! This is very interesting. A story-telling platform sounds like a great idea. Do you mean something similar to Wattpad?

 

For authors who are seeking publication who are already independently published, it would be a wonderful opportunity to put their work in front of readers. Wattpad is heavily secular and doesn't even have a Christian section, so I think a similar platform which had Christian content or, at least, content from a Christian worldview, would be fantastic. I'm already planning to use free short fiction as part of my content marketing, and I would be very interested in a place like that. Keep me updated!

 

I can imagine the challenges that present themselves setting up and running such a thing, and I pray that God gives you wisdom as you put it together!

 

14 hours ago, Regina Walker said:

I recently made a social media exodus (in early March).

I detest social media and would love to abandon the whole thing, but at the moment I see no way around being on Facebook. I've made some valuable connections there with other writers, both personally and professionally. I found my editor, beta readers, and some book reviewers there and it's useful for promotion. I have an author page on Facebook and Instagram and Goodreads accounts just in case readers look me up.

 

But, yes, it can suck up massive amounts of time and feed into unhealthy thought patterns and "comparisonitis." I deal with it by limiting my time there.

 

@Zee I found reviewers on two Christian reviewer groups on Facebook and through Booksprout and Hidden Gems. Booksprout is free. And @Rebecca, that's another idea for your platform. I think Christian authors would bite your hand off with eagerness if you were also offering a place with readers who are willing to review their books on Amazon, Bookbub, Goodreads, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, GooglePlay and other sales channels.

 

I've participated in promotions with other authors on Storyorigin (mentioned on another thread) and Bookfunnel, and that's brought me some sales. I've also used paid promo services. Faithful Reads and 1531 Entertainment are excellent and deserve a mention.

 

I have a website and I'm preparing to start a mailing list, God willing within the next two months. It's important to have your own real estate that you control, and a website and mailing list will give me that. In my genre, authors promote each others' work to their newsletters. It's a low-cost and effective way of getting in front of new readers, provided you choose very carefully who to collaborate with.

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4 hours ago, EBraten said:

It's important to have your own real estate that you control, and a website and mailing list will give me that.

I've been toying with the idea of starting a newsletter. I don't want to have too much to keep up with, however.

Also, I delete a lot of newsletters that I've signed up for and ultimately have an unsubscribe day or two every month where I quit just deleting and actually actively unsubscribe from stuff. It is rarely because they provided bad content, and usually just because I am working with limited time and reading newsletters doesn't often feel like the best use of that time.

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4 hours ago, EBraten said:

I have an author page on Facebook and Instagram and Goodreads accounts just in case readers look me up.

Do you have your IG and FB linked so that what you post on IG goes to FB or do you create different content for each platform?

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Regina Walker said:

Do you have your IG and FB linked so that what you post on IG goes to FB or do you create different content for each platform?

They are linked, but my Instagram account is under my pen name while my Facebook account is for my private profile. I have an author page and use the same content there as on Instagram but I have to create different graphics because I use one of those tile patterns on Instagram to make my feed look prettier. 🙂

Edited by EBraten
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1 hour ago, Regina Walker said:

I've been toying with the idea of starting a newsletter. I don't want to have too much to keep up with, however.

I'm starting one because everyone whose advice I respect recommends a mailing list as central to their marketing. It's a daunting prospect to come up with good content that will engage subscribers and that they'll find worth their while to read. And I hear you about having a lot on your plate!

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25 minutes ago, EBraten said:

I'm starting one because everyone whose advice I respect recommends a mailing list as central to their marketing. It's a daunting prospect to come up with good content that will engage subscribers and that they'll find worth their while to read. And I hear you about having a lot on your plate!

 

I've hesitated taking this route because I fear the time and creative energy to create quality newsletter content would have an adverse effect on my novel writing. And it doesn't help that I remain skeptical that mailing lists aren't just another marketing fad that does nothing more than flood readers inboxes with more material than they have time to read.

 

I have to then wonder if inundating readers with newsletters is actually hurting us in the long-run.  After all, don't we want readers reading books instead of newsletters?

 

18 hours ago, suspensewriter said:

You should check out the book advertising section on BookBub.

 

There was a time when Bookbub was king. Not sure if that's true anymore. I experimented with their CPC ads last year, but didn't have any success. I haven't ever tried their conventional email list advertising because it was too pricey. Many self-pub authors used it for their free days on KDP Select, and often reported thousands of downloads. It seemed to work well for those who had series, giving away book one and seeing follow-on sales on subsequent books.  

 

  

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10 hours ago, carolinamtne said:

Z, if you click on his chart, it will open to a readable size. Then just take a screen shot.

Thank you, I know. But I'd like to use the links instead of typing in the wrong one multiple times to see if they're still good. 😉

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25 minutes ago, Accord64 said:

And it doesn't help that I remain skeptical that mailing lists aren't just another marketing fad that does nothing more than flood readers inboxes with more material than they have time to read.

I'm going to give it a good go and will report back on whether or not it made a difference. I think email marketing has been going on long enough to be beyond fad status. But good content is crucial. There are authors whose emails I click on immediately because I know it will be worthwhile. And there are those whose newsletters I largely ignore.

 

Also, an author friend of mine shared my book in her newsletter and I had a sales spike the day it went out, both on Amazon and Apple Books. That's the kind of newsletter I want! With subscribers who buy. 😁

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15 minutes ago, EBraten said:

But good content is crucial. There are authors whose emails I click on immediately because I know it will be worthwhile. And there are those whose newsletters I largely ignore.

 

True. And maybe I'm just afraid I'd be one of those authors who gets ignored. 😁

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1 hour ago, EBraten said:

I'm starting one because everyone whose advice I respect recommends a mailing list as central to their marketing.

 

1 hour ago, Accord64 said:

I've hesitated taking this route because I fear the time and creative energy to create quality newsletter content would have an adverse effect on my novel writing. And it doesn't help that I remain skeptical that mailing lists aren't just another marketing fad that does nothing more than flood readers inboxes with more material than they have time to read.

 

You know, I have deleted every mailing list I'm on because I can't stand being deluged with their materials.  It just gets to be too much.  And if I get one more advice on emails on how to write I think I'll throw up!

 

So I deleted everyone except for Lynn's.  She doesn't try to sell you anything, or promote anything.

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